Thursday 8 October 2020

What is a Low FODMAP Diet?

If you are reading this article you probably have already heard of the FODMAP Diet and are wishing to learn more about it, or you might be just curious about what a FODMAP diet actually is.

Melbourne based dietitian, Sue Shepherd probably best explains the name of the FODmap Diet as actually being derived from the acronym (abbreviation) referring to Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols.
  • Fermentable
  • Oligosaccharides (eg. Fructans and Galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS))
  • Disaccharides (eg. Lactose)
  • Monosaccharides (eg. excess Fructose)
  • And
  • Polyols (eg. Sorbitol, Mannitol, Maltitol, Xylitol and Isomalt)
These are complex names for a collection of molecules found in the food we eat. In some people these molecules can be poorly absorbed. When the molecules are poorly absorbed in the small intestine of the digestive tract, these molecules then continue along their journey along the digestive tract, arriving at the large intestine, where they act as a food source to the bacteria that live there normally. The bacteria then digest/ferment these FODMAPs and can cause symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome include abdominal bloating and distension, excess wind (flatulence), abdominal pain, nausea, changes in bowel habits (diarrhoea, constipation, or a combination of both), and other gastro-intestinal symptoms.

Although this sounds all very complex, probably the foremost experts on FODMAP diet from Monash University do a great job in explaining the FODMAP Diet in simplistic terms in this video:

Want More Information?

If you would like some more information Monash University Low FODMAP Diet website has some great information:
* NB: You can also download the Monash University FODmap App from their "About" page.

Also worth a look is Sue Sheperd's Website:

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